Spring games serve as a perfect showcase for Red Sox prospects
The Boston Red Sox played their first game of the 2022 Spring Training season on Thursday and it served as a perfect showcase for a number of their prospects.
We’ll start with Jeter Downs. He was one of the most talked about prospects in the Red Sox system this offseason by fans. Not exactly for positive reasons though. Downs is coming off a terrible year. So what did he do in his first game? He went 0-for-1 but drew two walks. The plate discipline was great to see. Downs also showed some great base running smarts. He scored two runs, one coming on a steal of home after the catcher threw down to second trying to get another runner.
Was it a perfect game? No. But it was a major step in the right direction and a great start to what will be a big statement Spring for Downs.
You have to talk about Ryan Fitzgerald too. The infielder is known for his phenomenal glove, but he introduced a lot of fans to his bat too. In the first inning, Fitz roped a two-run single (would’ve been a double but Yolmer Sanchez seemed to think the ball was going to be caught). He finished the day 1-for-2 with the two RBI and a steal. Fitzgerald is off most people’s radars, but he’s got a great all-around game and a big Spring could put him on the map and get him to the Majors in 2022.
Elih Marrero spent 2021 just getting on base and the catcher did more of the same in his first Spring game. Marrero went 2-for-2 with two doubles, three RBI, and two runs scored. He’s got a great arm and a pretty underrated offensive game. It doesn’t help that there are a lot of catchers ahead of him at the moment but a tank of an offensive game to start the year doesn’t hurt.
Tyreque Reed’s first year in the Red Sox system last season saw him drive in a career-high 71 runs. He went 2-for-2 with a double, three RBI, and one run scored. So that insane run-production is still a thing. Reed has great power and made a strong first impression last year. Looks like he’s ready to build on that in 2022.
David Hamilton was part of the Alex Binelas, Jackie Bradley Jr., Hunter Renfroe trade. His best attribute is his blazing speed, which he didn’t get to show off this game. He did get to showcase his ability to get on-base though, going 0-for-1 with two walks and a run scored.
Nick Sogard was brought over when the Red Sox traded for catching prospect Ronaldo Hernandez. Sogard went 1-for-3 with a double and two RBI. He might not jump out at you, but Sogard is good at everything and getting a chance to shine a little bit in Spring Training should bring more eyes to the infielder.
I’ve talked you all to death on Ceddanne Rafaela. So it made my day to see a couple people on Red Sox twitter join the Ceddanne Chipper Nicasio Marte Rafaela bandwagon. The utility-man went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored. He got to show off his improving bat and ridiculous speed and I can’t wait to see how many people are talking about him when the Spring is over.
The Red Sox won their first Spring Training game of 2022 by a final score of 14-1 over the Minnesota Twins. And a hefty portion of that offense came from prospects – quite a few that aren’t exactly household names. This was a perfect showcase to introduce them to the fans.